Buying a house is an emotional experience. This is especially true for young couples buying their first home. I can remember how giddy my daughter and her husband were during the property viewing because they couldn’t help but relate each part of the house with the future life they had in mind.
What most people don’t realise is that Agents use these very emotions to convince you to buy – preferably ‘now’. Given that buying property is a huge investment, buying based on how you feel at the moment can be costly. That is why it’s very important to keep your excitement in check and remain objective to ensure that the house you are buying is one that can accommodate your needs.
Don’t Get Distracted, Focus On The Space
A viewing is part of an estate agent’s arsenal of sales tools. Never forget that. That’s why you should remember that everything you see or experience during a viewing was put in there to convince you to buy a house.
So try to ignore the aromatic coffee or the freshly baked cookies in the kitchen. Turn off the mood lighting and any music that’s being played. They’re all distractions. Instead, focus on space and imagine yourself living in it.
Check if the rooms are big enough to accommodate your existing furniture. If not, then it means that you’re going to spend extra on new furnishings when you move in.
Does the space have the proper layout you’re looking for? Does it have enough area to accommodate a living space, dining area, bedroom, and bathroom?
How about the noises outside or lack of it? Do you prefer living in a quiet neighborhood? Perhaps you can’t get a good night’s sleep without hearing the sound of honking cars and rumbling trains in the background?
Make Sure The House Is In Good Condition
Another area that goes overlooked when emotions are running high is the overall condition of the house. I gave a more detailed checklist on what to look for when inspecting a home in a previous entry. But here is a quick little recap on what you want to be watching out for:
Look at the foundation. Don’t panic if you find hairline cracks in the block or concrete foundation.
However, don’t ignore horizontal or vertical, because these cracks can grow into a big structural problem if not remedied instantly.
Verify that the ceilings don’t have any damp straining or discolouration. A different condition means that the ceiling is leaking. Try to run your fingers on the windows. Any condensation that happens when you do this means there is poor insulation in the property. Other red flags include moulds on the walls and rotting timber frames on the windows.
Don’t just focus your senses on the interiors. Old, leaky gutters and downpipes could cost you lot when replaced, as well as missing roof tiles and chipped brickwork.
Check The Utilities. Turn on the tap and see if there is hot water flowing. Doing this helps you determine the condition of the boiler and the strength of the water pressure.
Last but not least, walk around the house and make a phone call from every corner of the property. Lack of mobile service is a big deal breaker for half of millennials looking for property, so don’t forget to do this test before you leave.
While these tips will not replace the opinion of trained professionals, it’s still good to keep these tips at hand so you won’t fall for flowery sales talk of estate agents out there.Tags: buy a house, first home, first time home buyers, home inspection, personal inspection of houses for sale